How To Help a Loved One Battling with Drug or Alcohol Abuse

Generally, when someone is struggling with addiction, it can affect them both psychologically and emotionally. Hence, it’s up to you to offer assistance by learning how to help a loved one battling with alcohol or drug abuse. 

The psychological impact of addiction can cause depression and many more. Simultaneously, the emotional impact can negatively influence such people’s relationships with colleagues, friends, and family. As you can see, it’s a complicated web. In spite of this, there is no one standard answer to how to help a loved one with drug abuse.

However, there are several tips for helping people with addiction issues. If your relative or friend is living with addiction, you may wonder how you can support them. Usually, it’s not always simple to decide to help someone who struggles with drug abuse. However, with your help, your loved one will enjoy a better chance of overcoming drug abuse.

Addiction is a continual, weakening brain disease. And, the journey to recovery is a lifelong one. This inevitably affects those closest to the addicted person. Often, it can seem like an impenetrable maze. However, if you know what to look for, it’s one that you can navigate. 

Acquire Thorough Knowledge About Addiction

Knowledge is power. Therefore, before you help your loved one with drug abuse, ensure you have a vast knowledge of addiction. Remember, you can only provide the help that you have. Until you understand drug abuse and its symptoms properly, you may find your loved one weird or too irritating. 

Also, you can easily miss the usual addiction signs happening right in front of you if you don’t know about it. Drug addiction is complex, and it’s normal if you can’t figure out everything from the onset. Nevertheless, taking your time to comprehend your loved one’s issue and the side effects will be significantly beneficial to their recovery.

Understand the drug addiction problem process. Also, find information on how it can affect your loved one, friends and the family. There are several resources available online for finding information regarding drug abuse and its side effects.

Inspire Them to Seek Help

One of the main tips on how to help a loved one with drug abuse is to encourage them to seek help. As with other conditions, the earlier you treat the addiction, the better. Nevertheless, don’t be disappointed if they refuse to seek treatment or find excuses not to receive treatment. You have to be relentless about how seeking professional help will help their recovery. 

However, you must avoid making them feel uncomfortable in the process. Another method is to prepare an intervention session for your loved one. Even though these are usually hard to do, an intervention session may be of great help to their addiction recovery process. If the person is already deep into the habit, an intervention specialist can help you and your loved one navigate through the process.

Also, you can help your loved one beat addiction by offering complete support. Usually, people struggling with addiction don’t realize how much their friends and family love them. You can always talk to them about your interests, and avoid waiting for them to hit bottom before speaking up. Assure them that you’ll support their recovery journey with full support from beginning to end.

Take Personal Counseling

Usually, it is helpful to get a few private counselling sessions for yourself. You see, counselling isn’t just for substance addicts. The more insight and understanding you have, the better you’ll be able to support your loved one. 

Additionally, there are numerous resources that can help you find counsellors. Your health insurance or the company’s Employee Assistance Program may have mental wellness benefits accessible to you. Discuss with someone you trust very much.

Seek Expert Help

One of the essential tips on how to help a loved one with drug abuse is to seek expert advice. If you need help with legal or monetary issues, it may be necessary to talk to attorney providers. Also, there are organizations that give services on a sliding-scale fee. 

Also, you can usually find some of them by running a quick search online. Some local churches generally provide low or no-cost counselling for addicts as well. 

However, the best course of action is to find an addiction recovery centre in Toronto. There, your loved one can get addiction treatment personalized to their specific needs. 

Bear Practical Expectations

Avoid lecturing or preaching to the addict; it won’t work. Usually, most find it difficult to hear what you’re saying. 

Also, don’t expect them to fulfil their promises. Ensure not to react to them with anger or pity. Don’t respond with compassion or anger. This may lead to you enabling the addict. Just be there whenever they need you. 

Final Tip — Always Take Good Care of Yourself

Our last tip on how to help a loved one with drug abuse is self-care. The most significant thing you can do to support an addict is to concentrate on your life. If you’re burdened because of their problems, it will only cause strain and resentment. Also, it can be tough to want to support a person who creates so much unrest in your life.

Therefore, you must find time to focus on yourself and personal pursuits. Take good care of yourself by eating, getting support, resting, and socializing. This way, you’ll be able to assist your loved one whenever they are ready.

Conclusion

Generally, no one wants to experience seeing their loved one in a bad situation. The same applies to drug abuse. If your loved one is struggling with addiction, it’ll affect you and your relationship with them. This is why the tips on how to help a loved one with drug abuse are essential.

Drug or alcohol addiction can destroy friends, work relationships, and families. However, the most outstanding help you can render is to help them seek treatment for their drug abuse. Be supportive and considerate, but be aware that they will probably create excuses for their behaviour. 

Continue to encourage them to seek help. Although it can be tough, this is the first significant step in how to help an addicted friend lead a healthy life in recovery.

However, understanding how to help a loved one with drug abuse is one aspect of addiction treatment and recovery. You have to ensure your loved one completes all the steps on the way to long-term sobriety and addiction recovery.

So, why not seek help from a professional addiction recovery centre in Toronto? Here at Addiction Healing Centre, we have the competency, facilities and experience to help you with addiction treatment. Check out our addiction treatment services to help your loved ones today!

The Amazing Advantages of Gender-Specific Addiction Treatment

The various advantages of gender-specific addiction treatment are proof that most times, therapists misappropriate treatment. Addiction, as a disease, affects both males and females. However, both genders experience addiction differently. Hence, addiction treatment should take this into consideration.

Therapists who make this mistake mean no harm. However, knowing your exact needs is crucial to the addiction recovery process. The differences in experiences are fundamental to choosing the addiction recovery treatment plan that’ll work.

Going into this article, there is a fundamental fact you should have in mind. There is a difference between ‘sex differences’ and ‘gender differences.’ The premise of sex differences is biological and genetic. While ‘gender differences’ revolve around a cultural definition, the individual’s self-perspective. Does the person answer to ‘he,’ ‘she,’ ‘them,’ etc.?

However, gender differences cannot be exclusive of sex differences. Hence, this article will focus on addiction treatment for males and females. Hence, we will take a look at why gender-specific addiction treatment works.

What does Gender-Specific Addiction Treatment Mean?

Gender-specific addiction treatments refer to measures designed to treat men and women separately. According to research, fundamental and cultural disparities exist in how men and women abuse substances. The major influencing factors, in this case, are dependence, substance choice, and brain responses. 

Substance addiction in men and women also stem from different reasons. Relapse in both genders also results from different circumstances. All these and more culminate in why gender-specific treatments are necessary. 

With the advent of this specialized treatment, individuals can enjoy a comfortable and supportive recovery experience. Keep reading to see how addiction affects men and women.

How Men and Women Experience Addiction Differently

The advantages of gender-specific addiction treatment justify several research observations. There is a difference in how either gender uses drugs, including the choice of drugs. 

For men, an addiction to marijuana and alcohol is typical. In contrast, women are more likely to suffer addiction to prescription drugs. Even if both suffer from the same substance abuse problem, addiction treatment for men differs from women’s.

The reasons for the use of drugs also differ in both genders. For men, the resultant pleasure causes addiction. These pleasurable experiences include concentration, sociability, or improvement in sex drive. 

This is unlike women who depend on drugs due to traumatic experiences and abuse. They need to heal from these emotions while not becoming vulnerable to a third party.

Another major cause of abuse for women is family. Women who grew up with drug-abusing parents are highly susceptible to addiction. The same goes for women with abusive partners.

This wide gap in the leading causes of addiction emphatically calls for gender-specific treatments. Beyond the causes, the extent of dosage also influences treatment. Generally, women abuse substances in lesser quantities than men. Also, women are more liable to falling into substance addiction faster than men.

This faster rate of addiction depends on the anatomy of a woman’s body. With lesser body weight, women have more body fat and lower body water. The presence of fat causes longer retention of alcohol. 

This is as against men with more water, which will eliminate alcohol faster. The extended presence of alcohol worsens its effects as it will invariably end up in the blood. 

Also, substance dependence progresses faster in women, due to susceptibility to the following disorders;

  • Bipolar disorder.
  • Depression.
  • Seasonal Affective disorder.
  • Cyclothymia.
  • Persistent Depressive Disorder.

Also, in most cases, women have conflicting dispositions to ‘seeking treatments.’ These factors make it very critical for women to have different recovery programs from men. Hence, people looking for the best addiction treatment in Toronto must understand these salient points.

Benefits of Gender-Specific Addiction Treatment

There are several advantages of gender-specific addiction treatment. These are due to its peculiarities. One of such is that the therapist is always of the same gender as the patient. This unique approach establishes a level of confidence and trust between both parties.

Most people find it very easy to be vulnerable to persons of the same gender. This is basically what recovery sessions need to establish as base-conditioning. When in the room with a therapist of the same gender, expressing feelings becomes easier.

In this condition of trust, it is easier to engage in honest conversations. The patient won’t feel shame or fear of judgment. Leveraging on this is the power of gender-specific addiction treatment. True healing from addictions and past experiences can only occur when the patient is vulnerable.

If a therapy session experience involves men and women, emotional attachments can develop. This can lead to romantic relationships, which is purely unprofessional. Though romance distracts patients from current experiences, it also causes loss of focus on recovery. And, nothing is more important than recovery for a substance addict.

Earlier in this article, we established the likely causes of addiction for both genders. With a therapist of the same gender, dealing with these issues becomes more natural. 

A same-gender therapist can easily connect and understand what the patient is going through. This is a critical factor for women and helps a great deal with their recovery.

These resultant advantages of gender-specific addiction treatment ease meeting the different expectations of either gender. 

Women-Specific Treatment

One of the many advantages of gender-specific treatment for women is how deep conversations can go. Women fall into addiction mainly because of issues related to the people in their lives. 

Only another woman can understand these issues ranging from motherhood to family, workplace, relationships, etc. Having another woman around breeds the safe environment women need to open up.

Another benefit of gender-specific addiction treatment for women is that it helps heal from trauma. Women experience trauma in different ways, ranging from verbal to physical and sexual assaults. 

They’ll most times open up on these issues only to another woman. Hence, both the therapist and the recovery support group should comprise women.

These abuses are issues that affect self-worth and value. For instance, a mother experiencing abuse will not be comfortable talking around children. This is why overcoming resultant addictions becomes easier with an all-women support group. 

Men-Specific Treatment: Why You Need It


The cultural stereotype of men makes it difficult to be vulnerable to women. This worsens when the man boycotts treatment, for fear of being perceived as weak. However, amid other men, mustering the courage becomes easier.

Owing to this, some processes have been tested and trusted for men. One of such is ‘correcting thought processes.’ Upon the correction of these thought processes and behaviours, getting rid of an addiction problem becomes more comfortable. On the other hand, introspection fails with men, since it is the acknowledgment of emotions.

Another issue that is very difficult to deal with in men is sexual abuse. In most societies, most people tend to overlook this situation. When a man experiences this, there is arguably no way he’ll open up to a woman. 

However, the presence of a male therapist will provide a haven. It is also easier to build friendships, networks, and connections in an all-men support group. All these culminate in creating the environment for healing.

Final Take

The significant advantages of gender-specific treatments are the conducive environment and understanding ears. Addiction, more often than not, stems from social, family, financial, or psychological issues. 

Breaking from these conditions requires vulnerability. This is only easy when patients don’t fear their values or strengths judged by others.

There are several addiction recovery centers in Toronto. However, our understanding and focus on gender-specific treatment stand us out. With experienced therapists, we offer the best addiction treatment for men in Toronto. Reach out to us now, let’s help you get your life back on track!

In-Patient vs Out-Patient Addiction Treatment: Which is best?

Choosing to break out of your relationship with addiction is a major step. However, the procedure requires time and planning — one that an addiction treatment centre can support you through. Some substance abuse and addiction treatments include counselling, therapy, and detox. All of these can be put into the in-patient vs out-patient rehab categories. So, between in-patient vs out-patient addiction treatment, which one is right for you?

Generally, both are effective for addiction treatment. In-patient addiction treatment refers to a patient under treatment living in a private facility temporarily. However, out-patient rehab refers to a patient undergoing treatment at an addiction treatment centre while residing at home. Notably, both methods offer discrete advantages and disadvantages. 

As it is one of the most crucial decisions on your way to recovery, you must examine both options thoroughly before deciding. The primary players in your decision card are the severity of your addiction as well as cravings. These two must be put under consideration to help you determine which is right for you between in-patient vs out-patient addiction treatment. 

Both in-patient and out-patient rehab will help you quit substance abuse and reduce potential future cravings. In this article, we’ll compare in-patient vs out-patient addiction treatment. We’ll define the key points, explore the major differences and help you make a decision on which is best for you. 

What is In-patient Addiction Treatment?

In-patient treatment is also referred to as residential treatment. Like you would guess, you reside at the treatment centre. In-patient addiction treatment can be helpful for those with severe alcohol or drug issues. In addition, it’s useful for those who struggle with specific mental challenges. 

Living in a rehab centre helps you avert the influence and temptation that provokes the daily use of substances. Essentially, living in a serene environment aids your recovery.

Licensed in-patient addiction facilities provide 24-hour intensive care and support. They also combine 3 stages of recovery into their rehab programs — growth, reflection, and detox. In-patient facilities are set up in the best way to teach you to adopt a substance-free life after recovery. This plan usually involves a step-down method to help your transition from in-patient care to group or individual counselling.

Furthermore, in-patient rehab includes both long-term and short-term programs. Usually, you can stay at the long-term private facilities from 6 months to a year. Whereas short-term rehab facilities only require you to stay for about three 3-6 weeks.

The Benefits of In-Patient Addiction Rehab

In-patient addiction treatment centres offer distinct benefits that make them the best choice for you:

  • In-patient facilities offer constant support, generally in non-hospital settings. You’ll never be alone during your addiction recovery journey.
  • Both long-term and short-term in-patient rehab schemes are structured to aid your detoxification. This will prepare you for a better post-addiction treatment lifestyle.
  • Also, treatment is hugely designed and aimed at all phases of addiction. This may include psychological and social factors such as personal experience or history, lifestyle or relationships.

In-patient or residential rehab requires a more significant commitment than the out-patient scheme. So, when deciding on which method is right for you between in-patient and out-patient rehab, consider the tips below:

  • Addiction treatment is highly strict and can be tasking. The rehab centre staff will decide on your schedule. Some people often find it difficult to adapt to the rigid program. In a way, it’s the severity of addiction treatment that makes in-patient rehab more effective.
  • In-patient rehab requires you to cut ties with your regular lifestyle. This means you may have to get daily care for your wards. You will probably need to take some weeks off work or school during addiction recovery.
  • Notably, in-patient rehab cost is usually higher than that of out-patient rehab.

What is Out-patient Addiction Treatment?

Out-patient rehab refers to day-to-day care in a facility or clinic, such as group sessions, consultation, or therapy. People who prefer out-patient rehab can reside at home during recovery. However, they may have to report to the facility daily for recovery sessions and other treatment procedures.

This freedom will allow them time to take care of their children or family members while staying on track in school or keeping up with their jobs. Usually, out-patient treatment costs are less than in-patient treatment. However, the support level is usually less intensive, unlike in-patient rehab.

Furthermore, most out-patient addiction treatment programs involve group or individual sessions and use a step-down strategy. This means that treatment sessions often become less frequent and intensive as you progress during treatment. In a way, they are set up to help you overcome your alcohol or drug dependence and maintain recovery over a long period.

In-patient vs Out-patient Addiction Treatment: Which Should I Choose?

So, you want to choose between in-patient and out-patient rehab? Deciding between in-patient vs out-patient addiction treatment is dependent on how severe your addiction is. However, if you want long-term success in your addiction recovery journey, then in-patient treatment is the best for you.

In-patient addiction treatment eliminates temptations and distractions by immersing you in a healthy environment. If you or someone you love is in an in-patient addiction rehab facility, you’ll have no access to alcohol or drugs. You will mostly live with others in different stages of recovery without the usual everyday stressors.

Out-patient therapy requires you to report to the addiction treatment centre every weekday. This makes it more flexible if you have conflicting familial or work obligations. However, it does not help in fighting cravings and eliminating substance use from your life.

Between everyday stressors and balancing your daily lifestyle with recovery, your chances of facing constant temptation is high. You can easily lose concentration due to external pressures or temptations. Whereas, with in-patient addiction rehab, you will stay in a healthy environment with those who are ready to help your recovery process.

Conclusion

Addiction is an illness, and recovery is a long-term process. Be safe in the knowledge that any option between in-patient vs out-patient addiction treatment will enhance your recovery. In-patient treatment will help you stay away from any form of temptation or cravings and connect you to people with the same goal as you — beating addiction. However, out-patient treatment offers a freedom that may come with constant temptation from the outside world.

No matter what addiction treatment method you choose, it will prepare you on the path to lifelong recovery. Ultimately, both in-patient and out-patient addiction treatment options can help your detoxification. The two are also capable of altering your attitude and perceptions about the substances you use. Notably, both will provide you with the necessary skills to progress with recovery after rehab.

Remember, in-patient addiction treatment offers 24-hour medical support and supervision for individuals. The program is also scheduled to accommodate everyone dealing with addiction,  from the most severe to less difficult situations. 

Do you or your loved ones have an addiction problem? Are you ready to take up your recovery journey? 

Are you ready to break out of your relationship with addiction? Well, you’re one step away from getting started. Contact us today for in-patient addiction treatment in Vancouver.

The Ultimate Checklist for Wellness During Addiction Recovery

Having a checklist for wellness during addiction recovery will convince you to seek treatment. Addiction is not a good state to be in, and we understand your struggles. We understand the feeling of solitude that comes with it. But you are not alone.

We understand the mental and psychological struggle of wanting to be normal again. And this article will help calm those fears. You probably have read somewhere that withdrawal can take a toll on you. It’s the truth, but that isn’t the whole story. There are things you can do during withdrawal and recovery to remain in sound health.

Addiction is a broad scope. It ranges from the use of substances to total dependence and inability to function without the substance. With our expertise and experience, we have been able to write this guide to help individuals suffering from substance addiction. 

You are taking the first bold step by being on this page. In the following sections, we will take a look at everything you need to know about withdrawal. This will lead us to a guide to wellness during addiction treatment.

The 5 Stages of Addiction Recovery

The need for a checklist for wellness during addiction recovery is necessary for the initial stage of treatment. Furthermore, it’s important to learn what to expect during addiction recovery.

Your being on this page means you are at the first stages of addiction recovery. The five stages of recovery details the trends and journey towards a life without addiction. 

There is no timeline for each of these stages; each person has a different recovery rate. This makes it difficult to ascertain how long it will take you to achieve full recovery. But, here are some things you will notice at every stage during the addiction recovery process:

Stage 1: Acknowledging the addiction


It is commonplace for addicts to deny being one. However, recovery starts once you can self-realize that there is a problem. This stage is a learning curve. This checklist for wellness during addiction recovery is necessary to climb that curve.

Stage 2: Awareness

This is the stage where you pay attention to your behaviour at work, home, and friends. At this stage, it is more than likely that you haven’t stopped substance intake. But, realizing the mistakes you make will bolster your conviction of getting addiction treatment in Vancouver.

Stage 3: Exploration

At this stage, you will try to do it alone. But, there is a high chance that you will go back to the bad habit. Then, you realize that you won’t be able to go it alone. At this stage, you start considering your options for professional assistance.

Stage 4: Starting the recovery process

The recovery process is long and comes with side effects. With the right checklist for wellness during addiction recovery, you can reduce the severity of these side effects. Your therapist will dictate the things you need on your addiction rehab checklist. This will be the premise of the wellness tips we will share in the section below.

Stage 5: Ongoing aftercare and recovery

During recovery, you have a high chance of suffering from a relapse. However, at this stage, you will master coping skills. These prevent relapse and keep you on the path to sobriety.

Don’t get too comfy at this stage. At this stage, a high percentage of addiction treatment patients suffer a relapse. However, with the support of friends and family, you can conveniently tow the path to long term sobriety.

Side Effects of Addiction Withdrawal

The importance of a wellness checklist during addiction recovery is to manage the side effects of addiction withdrawal. Withdrawal symptoms vary, depending on the substance:

  • Change in appetite
  • Congestion
  • Muscle pain
  • Changes in mood
  • Irritability
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Restlessness
  • Shakiness
  • Tremors
  • Runny nose
  • Sleeping difficulties
  • Sweating
  • Vomiting

There are other substance-peculiar side effects, but the above are more common. The following checklist for wellness during addiction recovery will help you handle recovery better. 

Guide to Wellness during Addiction Treatment

Health and wellness mean different things to different people. However, a common factor is that the definition of wellness cuts across the following seven dimensions. 

Addiction treatment in Vancouver is not an easy process. However, this checklist for wellness during addiction recovery across all dimensions can make it easier.

Physical Wellness

You will experience the side effects of addiction recovery in this dimension. Addiction takes a toll on several physical conditions and parts. 

These include eating habits, exercising, and rest. With substance addiction, the expected standard of life is out of the window. These side effects also affect other aspects of life.

Your addiction recovery plan for physical wellness must include the following;

  • Taking exercise for a minimum of 3 – 5 years weekly. You should ensure that you make excellent exercise choices in this period. 
  • Make sure you eat properly and healthily
  • Maintain your weight at a healthy level
  • You should go for regular body checkups.
  • You should get regular dental checkups.
  • Ensure emotional wellness at all times (be able to tackle life issues, without resulting in substance use)
  • Consistency with therapy will go a long way in keeping you in check.

Social Wellness

The checklist for wellness during addiction recovery should also include your social life. In the dimension of social wellness, you can connect with other people. 

Friends and family can form a rigid support system for you. Social wellness is similar but different from emotional wellness. The best tips to maintain wellness during addiction recovery here are:

  • Develop contact with others by going and contributing to group therapy.
  • Try to meet at least one person per day.
  • Contact your friends and family regularly.

Intellectual Wellness

This dimension involves the expansion of knowledge and skill set. The best way to enhance this dimension is by working on other aspects of wellness. 

For instance, mastering the triggers of your addictive behaviours and knowing how to prevent them is important. The checklist for wellness during addiction recovery for this dimension include;

  • Focus on academics or taking classes
  • Get involved in local politics
  • Taking up a new hubby
  • Reading and attending workshops are critical.

Occupational Wellness

Wellness in your job involves the satisfaction you derive from it. You need to ensure that your job is one that you enjoy. If your job easily frustrates you, it may cause a relapse during recovery. To enjoy your job more;

  • Get better by taking more professional development courses
  • Improve your communication skills. This fosters an effective interaction with your employer and colleagues.

Financial Wellness

This dimension doesn’t particularly mean that you should be wealthy. It simply means that you get satisfaction from your current financial state. 

If you have financial issues during recovery, relapse can occur. Hence, you need a checklist to ensure financial wellness during addiction recovery:

  • Clear your debts
  • Have a savings plan
  • Learn and understand the financial markets
  • Give time to mastering investment.

Environmental Wellness

This refers to the need for you to live in an environment that is pleasant and supportive of recovery. Your environment has a way of influencing other aspects of health. Hence, you need to put more thought into your immediate living space.

  • Spend more time in nature
  • Make your immediate environment as simple as possible
  • Ensure your environment is very clean
  • Declutter your space regularly.

Spiritual Wellness

Spiritual wellness simply refers to the dimension of expanding your sense of purpose in life. This aspect is also linked to other dimensions. The best way to maintain this aspect of life is by sticking through with recovery. 

If your spiritual wellness is connected to spiritual beliefs, ensure you do the right things. If your spiritual wellness is simply about the sense of purpose, keep your focus.

Final Take

This checklist for wellness during addiction recovery is vital. While they won’t eliminate the side effects of withdrawal, they’ll go a long way toward coping. Getting treatment is a hard decision to come to, but you can make progress on this by reaching an addiction rehab near you

Here at Addiction Healing Centre, we offer customized addiction treatment to fit your unique needs. Our addiction experts can help you develop a checklist along with coping skills. This way, you can maintain wellness throughout the addiction recovery process. Contact us to get started.

Best Strategies to Manage Stress During Addiction Recovery

The knowledge of strategies to manage stress during addiction recovery is important. Stress is an emotion everyone experiences. It’s the body’s “fight or flight” reaction to a specific action or situation. However, we can’t solve most of the problems we face today by fighting or fleeing. 

Crucially, if allowed to grow unchecked, stress can make you stumble on the road to recovery. But there’s hope yet. There are several effective strategies to help manage stress during addiction recovery.

In fact, almost 30% of adults aged 18 to 65 report feeling constantly stressed. This isn’t uncommon in the fast-paced, information-based world we live in today. However, there have been links between stress and relapse. When we’re facing a lot of pressure, it’s normal to fall back on bad habits. 

Over the course of this blog, we will discuss helpful tips for managing stress during the process of addiction treatment. With these tips, you can navigate the process of addiction treatment without the additional burden that stress brings. 

Stress in Addiction Recovery: What are the Symptoms?

If you’re going to live sober, you’re going to have to learn a few strategies to manage stress during addiction recovery. The art of war says no thy enemy. In the spirit of that, let’s identify a few symptoms of stress 

  • Insomnia
  • Low energy
  • Anxiety
  • Headaches 
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Becoming easily agitated, having mood swings
  • Nausea
  • Inability to concentrate

Here’s How to Manage Stress During Addiction Recovery

Stress can come from many sources; family, relationships, work, school, etc. Learning how to manage stress and move on happily without resorting to alcohol and drugs is essential when pursuing long-term sobriety. 

To help you achieve that, here are nine strategies to manage stress during addiction recovery.

Take Breaks

No matter where you work, or how important your job is, you must remember to take breaks. Going on long benders where you don’t even have the time to pant, talk less of rest, can be severely detrimental to your mental state.

Take the time out to breathe and relax your body for several minutes every day. This is a conscious rest, and it’s necessary because your body needs time every day to adapt to the stress you place on it. 

Otherwise, doing more work will be like adding one more piece of baggage to an already full trolley. Remember, no one knows which straw is going to break the camel’s back and send you back to your addiction.

Be Mindful


As someone on the road to recovery, this strategy may be something that your addiction treatment experts teach during addiction recovery. Being mindful, in this sense, is staying aware of your thoughts. Often, when we’re stressed, we tend to think of strange and unpleasant thoughts.

This is doubly true for people recovering from addiction. Self-critique is usually a self-inflicted stressor. You judge and punish yourself for your cravings, thoughts, and other supposed wrongs. This is unnecessary and even counterproductive. 

So, you have to be mindful to combat this mental stressor. Catch the thoughts that seem wayward, admit to them without judging yourself or feelings. 

Also, remind yourself of the positives in your life instead of focusing on the negatives. When that inner voice of criticism comes, and you’re mindful, acknowledge it. Encourage yourself and move on without dwelling on it.

Exercise


Yes, exercise is one of our strategies to manage stress during addiction recovery. Cliché, yes, but factual. Research from McMaster University suggests that less than 40% of Canadians exercise for stress relief. Also, several studies show that exercise can help with transitional phases during recovery from addiction.

Exercise also fosters a general state of well being, better sleep, improved cognitive function, boost energy, and self-esteem. Just think about it. Exercise gives you a good feeling and does wonders for your mental and physical health. It’s great for your overall addiction recovery. 

Take Care of Your Body

When we face overwhelming situations, our minds begin to falter, but the body soon follows. Preoccupation with the problem at hand may lead to neglecting your body’s needs. Many people stop eating and sleeping properly during periods of intense stress. 

While it doesn’t seem like self-care is one of the strategies to manage stress during addiction recovery, it’s crucial to your physical and mental health. Your body needs the right amount of nutrients and sleep to function correctly. When it does not, it can lead to severe consequences, which can be debilitating. 

Vent

Venting is hugely cathartic. Sometimes, you just need to let it all out. There are several ways to do this. You can call a close friend or family member, someone who’ll listen to you and simply talk it out. 

Speaking about your problems with someone you trust can make them seem smaller and less impossible. You may even gain a new perspective and move past the issue faster.

However, not everyone feels comfortable venting their spleen out on others, and some don’t have trustworthy people to cry to. But, venting can be done in other ways. For example, you can choose a hobby. Or you can get creative and turn your frustrations into something beautiful. If you can’t and need someone to talk to, you should look up an addiction treatment centre in Vancouver.

Change of Scenery

Another one of our strategies to manage stress during addiction recovery is simply getting away from it all. Sometimes, when the problem seems to be without end, you can choose to take a time-out. 

However, you choose to do this is up to you. You can choose to plan a weekend getaway. You can decide to go for a joyride and feel the breeze. Or you can simply take a day off, switch off your phone and binge on Netflix. 

We’re not saying you should run away from your issues. But changing your surroundings can help you get a newer perspective, relax your mind and set you firmly on the path to sobriety.

Prioritize Your Goals


Getting sober grants you a new lease on life. For most people, they want to catch up on several things they missed out on while struggling with addiction. Does this sound like you? If it does, then you’re dancing on a knife’s edge. 

While it seems like doing several things at once is a quick way to get several things done, for most people, it just means you may be spreading yourself too thin. This is especially true for former addicts. Maintaining your sobriety should be your most important goal right now, so you have to reduce stress and be realistic with your goals.

Identify Your Stressors and Plan Ahead

What are the things that tend to stress you out? Coming in late to work, rushed deadlines, family interference, etc. Identifying these events and making plans to counter them is a great way to manage stress in recovery. In this way, you can solve the problem before it even becomes one.

Meditation/Yoga

Meditation can sound like something that elites do for fun, but it can be an excellent coping mechanism as well. To simplify, it’s just breathing deeply to achieve calm. 

However, it can be done anywhere and helps you focus on your inner self and eliminate the triggers that stressors may provide.

Yoga is a more movement-focused meditation that can help as a form of exercise for both body and mind. You can easily take up yoga and meditation. With the help of an addiction treatment expert, you can learn the yoga positions necessary to help manage stress during addiction recovery.

Conclusion

These are our strategies to manage stress during addiction recovery. But if you still can’t de-stress and relax, then you may need to seek professional help. 

Here at Addiction Healing Centre, we can help you with all forms of addiction recovery services, including forming a stress management plan for you. Check out our addiction rehab services for men in Vancouver.